Google puts its ideology into practice that greatness is just the beginning! Google
buys robot firm Boston Dynamics, this time. It’s worth noting that this is Google’s eight robotics-related acquisition within the past year. Boston Dynamics a robot engineering company has been servicing military contracts and Google has confirmed that it will honor all its existing military contracts. However, its future strategic plans are unknown. It would also honor an existing contract with Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to deploy its Atlas prototype robot for humanitarian use during natural calamities and will not take up any military contracts in the future. Google’s techie Andy Rubin, is responsible for the new robotics division. Larry Page announced in March that Rubin would start a “new chapter” soon. So are they planning for a moon-shot? This is no longer a secret! This pronounces a business of $5 billion or more.
In 1992, Marc Raibert along with a group of colleagues from National Academy of Engineering, started Boston Dynamics — An engineering company that prides on building innovative robots and other equipment for human simulation. It worked for US Defence department: DARPA, US military and others. Boston Dynamics owns an extraordinary team of engineers and scientists who merge analytical thinking with practicality to create out-of-the-box humanoids and simulation products. Some of the well-known, innovative robots were: BigDog, SquishBot, CHEETAH, RISE, PETMAN, etc. The human simulations products include: DI-Guy. Robots
have contributed extensively in Space exploration and the likelihood that commercial robots
may flood the market in a few years from now.
Boston Dynamics’s, latest creation, BigDog walks, runs, climbs and also carries heavy weight on rough, stony ground. It contains a hydraulic system. It is a quadrupedal robot is size of a big dog or mule. It absorbs shocks with ease and recycles energy. The Army Research Laboratory’s RCTA program funded the addition of dynamic manipulation. It is user-friendly and manages communications with the user easily.
LS3 is based on the Big Dog’s design. It uses a range of cameras; sensors to follow a designated leader. It understands and receives orders from voice commands.Cheetah uses the leg design implemented in the making of Big Dog and LS3, but designed purely for great speed. It robot is the world’s fastest legged robot, crossing 28.3mph to break the previous record of 13.1mph. More compassionate roles for robots are providing therapy to human beings or delivering supplies to remote communities.
With the success of Google’s ventures, the security of robots loaded with sensitive data may become a national issue in the future generations to come. If beast-like robots replace human labor, then low-value jobs may become redundant. The cost of independence is usually more responsibility. How our giant companies handle their independence and ambitions cannot just impact the way wars are fought, but also many unknown other aspects.